In Belgium, No One Can Hear You Fhtagn

What waits between the stars? Story illustration by Peter Szmer

What waits between the stars? Lovecraft eZine illustration by Peter Szmer

It’s been a pretty good month. I’m delighted to announce that I have sold French-language translation and publication rights for my Lovecraftian SF story, “How Rare Are Light and Life.” My first foreign rights sale! They were acquired by Patrick Dechesne for a Lovecraftian anthology forthcoming this autumn. Patrick is starting a French-language house, entitled “Les Editions de l’Instant,” which will publish anthologies and novels, including some translated from English. I’ll share more information about this project as I have it.

Big thanks to Mike Davis for first publishing this story in The Lovecraft eZine, a year ago this month. I’ve been pleased to hear from both friends and strangers who have read and enjoyed it over the last twelve months, and I’m glad to see its wings tentacles spread a little farther.

Writing year 2014: Blog Readership Interlude

This morning I’m doing a little spreadsheet upkeep, and I thought I’d look at my blog’s reach. This is over a few years, but still: I never would have expected this as a kid. I had high hopes in terms of productivity that haven’t worked out, and my younger self says “Closing in on 40, and you haven’t published a novel yet, let alone 20? Loser!”

That said, my blog is read by robots people from around the world, and by year’s end I’ll have published at least a dozen stories in toto. I’m shooting for more, but it’s a milestone. Maybe one of these days I’ll start thinking seriously about a short story collection, and how to make that happen. Until then, the work reaches where it reaches, be it short story or blog post. To wit:

country of origin for blog viewers

International Renown, What Ho!

My Next Novel Will Be a Smelly Cat with Blue Hair and Cholera

Another Day at the CircusI have not yet determined whether “magical realist murder mystery” or “literary novel of the fantastic” or “contemporary novel of memory, ecology, and inheritance” is the key to attracting an agent’s attention, but thus far we’re at (D) none of the above. That said, I’ve gotten some personal rejections with compliments on my writing. Onward, onward. At some point I’ll throw in the towel, but I ain’t there yet.

Since describing my current novel on submission has involved a certain amount of query letter contortion, I figure I’ll make it easier to categorize next go-round. Near as I can tell, Knife Fighting with Mondrian is an “anti-bildungsroman about an unsuccessful middle-aged artist fixated on the work of a celebrated rival.” It’s going to be the next sparkly vampires, I tell you what.

Update on Statistics, Lies, Stagnation, and the Human Heart

t.rex model

Lumbering Forward

Since my self-analysis with graphs last November, I’ve done both more writing and more reading than I have for some time. No charts & graphs until the half-year mark and the end of 2014, but the current breakdown looks like this…

Write at least 100,000 words of completed or truly “in progress” fiction rough drafts by December 31, 2014. I’ve managed something like 8,729 words of new fiction. Peanuts to some, victory to me. I didn’t keep as close track as I should have, and the total count is probably higher, on account of measuring final drafts instead of bloated first drafts. Would that I’d written more, but I was out of commission for several weeks for health and other reasons.

Place six pieces of fiction for publication. Nothing accepted yet this year, but I have six things floating around in Slushlandia, two of which are new short stories since November.

Get back to blogging. 13 posts since November. At my current rate, that’s going to amount to around three-and-a-half times what I did last year. Given my blogging here is largely tied to reading, writing, and art, I’m gonna count that as a “win” in terms of deeper engagement with what matters most to me.

Read at least two books per month. On target. Plus sundry articles and general internet dreck. I’m falling back into my old habit of having too many books going simultaneously, but trying (!) to keep it under control.

How’s your writing/reading/creating year going?